Halliburton profits soar

File under “Well, duh.” From Reuters, Oct. 22:

HOUSTON – Halliburton Co , the world’s No. 2 oilfield services group, on Sunday posted a 25 percent rise in earnings, beating Wall Street forecasts, on robust spending by producers on oil and gas output, particularly in North America.

The Houston-based company posted third-quarter income from continuing operations of $615 million, or $0.58 a share, compared with income from continuing operations of $492 million, or $0.47 a share, in the third quarter of 2005.

The figures topped analysts’ average forecast of 54 cents per share, according to Reuters Estimates.

“Overall it’s a good set of numbers,” said RBC Capital Markets analyst Kurt Hallead, noting the company had outperformed larger rival Schlumberger Ltd in North and South America.

Revenues rose 19 percent to $5.8 billion from $4.9 billion a year ago.

Like others in the sector, Halliburton has seen revenues and profits rise over the past two years as high oil and gas prices spurred energy producers to increase production.

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